Obinotus Posted March 24, 2015 Share Posted March 24, 2015 (edited) The origins of Commercial Fishing in the UKSailing vessels have been used for fishing for around 3-4,000 years ( earliest recorded in Egypt I think ) but it wasn't until the middle ages that great fleets of sail driven vessels began to dominate our coastal and distant waters. Initially these vessels fished with long lines of baited hooks fishing for Cod , Haddock and Halibut ( fished on the bottom anchored at each end ) eventually using long drift nets fished near the surface for Herring , Pilchards and Sardines.The Beam trawl was first experimented with in the 1300's but didn't come into great use until the 1700's when the fleets of beam trawlers were sailing from Brixham and most of the South Coast of Englands ports. The Brixham fleets worked their way around from the English Channel grounds into the North Sea eventually finding the rich fishing grounds of the Dogger Bank which was soon called the "Silver Pits" because of the scales of the fish on the boats shining on the hull as they sailed into Whitby or Scarborough to land. It took the advent of the Steam Railways reaching Hull and Grimsby to push the docks owners into building fish docks and markets attracting the bulk of the Sailing Trawler fleets. There are a great many different types of Sailing Drifter ( Cornish vessels differed from Brixham vessels which in turn were different to the Humber or Scottish fleets ) so I will not cover these here. The sailing drifters started from about 30ft ( NE of Scotland these were called Yawls ) and these boats didn't follow the Herring around the coast in the same way the larger vessels did , they fished the Herring only when they were within 30nm of their home port and fished with creels ( pots ) for Lobsters and Brown Crab ( Edible Crab or in Scotland they call them Partins ) and small versions of long lines for Haddock and Cod over the winter months. The Sailing Drifters over 45ft would follow the Shoals of Herring around the North Sea and around the West Coast of Scotland and down into the Irish Sea.The Season would start mid May to Early June with the Herring being caught up around the Shetland Islands / Orkney Islands. By the end of July the Herring had migrated South and was being caught off the Buchan Coast ( NE from Fraserburgh to SE from Arbroath ). This fishery lasted until late August when the fleet would sail en-mass down to Great Yarmouth / Lowestoft for the Autumn fishery lasting until the end of October. The Scottish boats then sailed back North and West to fish in the Minch and around the Outer Hebrides and down into the Irish Sea until December / January when the fleet would head home to repair nets , sails and the vessels ( including a much needed paint ) before fishing with longlines for 1 or 2 months whilst waiting for the Herring Season to come around again. The Humber ports sent sailing longliners all the way to Canada's Grand Banks in the 1700's and they fished all around Greenland , Iceland and Faroes. These vessels either split the Cod and salted them to preserve them or they had what would now be called a Vivier hold ( originally called Well Boats their fish holds were sealed fore and aft bulkheads with rows of holes in the sides of the hull to let seawater circulate to keep the fish alive so Cod caught off Canada would still be alive when landed in the UK ). Fishing Vessel of this time period:Dogger (boat) The dogger was a form of fishing boat, described as early as the fourteenth century, that commonly operated in theNorth Sea. Originally single masted, in the seventeenth century, doggers were used with two masts. They were largely used for fishing for cod by rod and line. Dutch boats were common in the North Sea, and the word dogger was given to the rich fishing grounds where they often fished, which became known as the Dogger Bank. The sea area in turn gave its name to the later design of boat that commonly fished that area, and so became associated with this specific design rather than the generic Dutch trawlers.DesignThe dogger was a development of the ketch. It was gaff-rigged on the main-mast, and carried a lugsail on the mizzen, with two jibs on a long bowsprit. The boats were generally short, wide-beamed and small, and carried out trawling or line fishing on the Dogger Bank. The name dogger was practically synonymous with ketch from the early seventeenth century, until the ketch began to increase in size during the period, eventually rising above 50 tons in the middle of the century.Doggers were considerably smaller vessels in comparison, usually displacing around 13 tonnes, and carrying around a tonne of bait, three tonnes of salt, and half a tonne each of food and firewood for the crew. Around six tonnes of fish could therefore be carried. They would generally have been around 15 metres long, with a maximum beam of 4.5 metres, and a draught of about 1.5 metres. They had a rudder rather than a steering oar and high sides. A decked area forward probably provided limited accommodation for the crew, as well as a storage and cooking area, with a similar area aft. There would have been two small anchors, and one main anchor to allow for extended periods fishing in the same spot, in waters up to 18 metres deep. The dogger would also have carried a small open boat to maintain the lines and row ashore.SignificanceDoggers were slow but sturdy vessels, capable of fishing in the rough conditions of the North Sea. Some doggers were even used as military vessels, and fitted with cannon. The Royal Navy was one such operator, using doggers as support vessels during the seventeenth century. They could also be used for short trading voyages, ranging into the English Channel. In 1658, during the English Civil War, the Parliamentary commander of the ship Andrew, a man named W. Batten, wrote to his superior: Sir, I believe the castle of Pendennis will not be long out of our hands; a dogger boat with four guns I have taken, where of one Kedgwin of Penzant was captain, a notable active knave against the Parliament, and had the King's commission; and now would fain be a merchant man, and was balasted with salt and had divers letters in her for Pendennis castle... Herring buss A herring buss (Dutch: Haringbuis) was a type of seagoing fishing vessel, used by Dutch and Flemish herring fishermen in the 15th through early 19th centuries.The buss ship type has a long history. It was already known around the time of the Crusades in the Mediterranean as a cargo vessel (called buzza, bucia or bucius), and we see it around 1000 AD as a more robust development of the Viking longship in Scandinavia, known as a bǘza. The Dutch Buis was probably developed from this Scandinavian ship type.The Buis was first adapted for use as a fishing vessel in the Netherlands, after the invention of gibbing made it possible to preserve herring at sea. This made longer voyages feasible, and hence enabled Dutch fishermen to follow the herring shoals far from the coasts. The first herring buss was probably built in Hoorn around 1415. The last one was built in Vlaardingen in 1841. Construction The ship was about 20 meters in length and displaced between 60 and 100 tons. The ratio of length to beam was between 2.5:1 and 4.5:1, which made for a relatively nimble ship, though still sufficiently stable to be seaworthy. It was a round-bilged keel ship with a round bow and stern, the latter relatively high, and with a gallery. The broad deck provided space to process the catch on board.The ship had two or three masts. The mainmast and foremast (if present) could be lowered during fishing, leaving only the mizzen mast upright. It was square rigged on the main mast, with a gaff rig on the mizzen. It had a long bow sprit with jibboom and up to threeheadsails. The main course and topsail could be reefed. Herring fleets The ships sailed in large fleets of 400 to 500 ships to the fishing grounds at the Dogger Bank and the Shetland isles. They were usually escorted by naval vessels, because the English looked askance at what they considered "poaching" in waters they claimed, and were prone to arrest unescorted Dutch fishing vessels. In wartime the risk of fishing vessels being taken by privateers was also large.The fleet would stay at sea for weeks at a time. The catch would sometimes be brought home by special ships (calledventjagers) while the fleet would still be at sea (the picture at the top shows a ventjager in the distance).The busses used long drift nets to catch the herring. Such nets hang like curtains across the travel paths of the herring schools. The fish would catch with their gills behind the meshes of the net (which is therefore a type of gillnet). The nets would be taken aboard at night and then the crews of eighteen to thirty men would start the gibbing, salting and barrelling immediately.There would be three to four voyages per season (depending on the weather and the catch). In the off-season the busses were used as normal cargo vessels, for instance to transport grain from the Baltic, or salt from Portugal. This multi-mode business model made the Great Fishery (as the herring fishery was called) especially profitable, as there was far less downtime than with exclusive use as fishing vessel. PS: If you have something to add to this topic or you miss sth. feel free to post it below. Sources: http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/guides/Sail_Fishing_Vessels http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dogger_(boat) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herring_buss Edited March 25, 2015 by Obinotus 16 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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